Native Garden

This pile of material has been lurking under our house for some time. With the cooler weather on the way and some days off work – and a green waste verge collection on its way – I decided to do the front native garden make-over sooner than later. So just over a week ago I got to it. It took nearly two days but it was good to get it done. Grass had taken over much of the native ground covers and so I removed them completely.

With much curiosity from the neighbour’s over the road I set about laying out the cardboard and newspapers and old clothing. The guy over the road even came and offered for me to put all our green waste on his verge for the collection as our verge has a public path. Most of the grass went on the verge, everything else was recycled on site either by mulching, composting or putting in the chicken pen.

Despite looking like a large pile, this heap of cardboard and papers really didn’t go that far once I got going. Much to my delight and also the neighbors, he had a pile of packing boxes he wanted to get rid of so they all went in as well and were very easy to lay down and covered a large area.

All the mulch from the trees out the back went on the garden as did mulch made from the removed native ground cover and trimmings from the eucalyptus. I went and checked out the nearest landscaping supply place down the road and was pleased to see native mulch for about $45 a cubic metre. I got $150 worth roughly with a small delivery charge and spread it out across the papers and cardboard.

I also had paper daisy seeds from a Diggers Club order and mixed them with some sand and put that down over the mulch with a light sprinkling over them. The following weekend it rained rather heavily and it was just what was needed for the new seedlings that I had planted out. I’ve had them in pots for some time and was thinking I would only get to it in the Spring. Now its all done and they have a winter of rainfall (perhaps) to assist them in getting established.

It never ceases to amaze me how much cardboard and newspapers get thrown away still from households. A proper mulching job takes a serious whack of newspapers/cardboard and still you could run short. I suppose that it is a matter of people doing what is easier. The bin is easier.

Having said that though. I anticipate the odd spraying/removal of grass that comes up from the neighbors side of the garden, but then I can’t imagine having to water the garden throughout summer either. I didn’t last summer and I lost one plant, nearly. It’s kind of hanging in there. After this mulch job I think it will take care of itself with just the odd separating of kangaroo paws every few years and lopping them down to a few inches height each autumn.

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